Sunday, January 29, 2012

What it Takes to Maintain a Good Kindred

I think a kindred is like any meaningful friendship or even like a marriage.  It takes good judgement, commitment, hard-work, and generosity to make it work.

You have to have the good judgement to choose people who are capable of working hard on building and maintaining the kindred with you.  They have to be stable enough, hard-working enough, and generous enough to make it work, despite glitches and growing pains that are naturally going to develop.  The people and families involved in the kindred need to be compatible.  "Compatible" can mean a lot of different things, but it does not mean being exactly alike.  Like any friendship or marriage, if you choose the wrong people to partner with...they will fail you, and thus destroy or greatly harm the mutual effort.

You have to be committed to making it work, and stable enough to not just wander off whenever the going gets a little rough.  You have to really believe in what you are doing, and willing to do what it takes to make it happen...and maintain it over time.

You have to be willing to work-hard at it.  You can't procrastinate fixing problems or doing necessary work.  You have to put in the time and effort to maintain the necessary connections and frith that holds the kindred together.

There is a level of generosity that is necessary to make a friendship, marriage or kindred work.  There is a give and take.  You have to offer trust, and also be trustworthy.  You have to believe in people, and also maintain your own credibility.  You have to be willing to listen to other people, and also share your own ideas.  You have to be willing to compromise at times, or better yet, work towards a group consensus that makes everyone satisfied with the direction your group is going.  Selfishness does not fit well into this equation.

All of this good judgement, commitment, hard-work, and generosity can come together, in the right time, the right place, and the right people into a frithful, lucky group...that is able to accomplish much more than the sum of its individual members.  Like a good marriage, in a good kindred relationship all the hard work and effort is well worth it.  It pays out to everyone involved, at least as much as they put in...if not more.

Mark Ludwig Stinson
Jotun's Bane Kindred
Temple of Our Heathen Gods

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